University of Maine Cooperative Extension food systems professionals Kate McCarty, Cumberland County, and Viña Lindley, Waldo County, were recently honored at the National Extension Association for Family and Consumer Sciences 88th annual session held Sept. 12–15 in Raleigh, North Carolina.

McCarty and Lindley received the first place Eastern Region NEAFCS Mary W. Wells Memorial Diversity Award. They were recognized for a home food preservation education program offered to incarcerated individuals at Maine State Prison with the goal of building personal sustainability through food safety and food preservation skills. 

The Mary W. Wells Memorial Diversity Award is presented in support of the Cooperative Extension System’s emphasis on diversity and pluralism — a national program to respond to the changing workforce, population and Extension audience. The award is named to honor the contributions to diversity for the association and profession by Mary Wells, NEAFCS past president. The commitment of McCarty and Lindley to meeting the needs of individuals, families and communities was cited as exemplary.

For more information, contact Kate McCarty at 207-781-6099 or More information about the program also is available on the UMaine Extension Maine Food Systems website.